As this exercise required me to have a subject within an even background, I used a statue figure and placed it within a white mini studio that I have. I took four images with the subject in the centre, away from the centre and to the right, close to the edge and in the corner.
The plain background works in ensuring that the subject is the attention of focus and the eye is drawn to them only.
For me, I feel the image where the subject is in the centre works bests as thats where my eye naturally falls. Secondly the image just off centre (see above image) also works well and makes you more conscious of the space, and you begin to wonder why the space, what else is going on etc.
The image that worked the least was the one where the subject is in the corner of the frame, its as if you wanted to capture something else but missed. For this it would need a strong background to help put the subject into context such as the example of the rice farmer in the coursebook.
For this, I decided to use an ornamental pot sculpture that I could have easy access to, and were about as necessary.
Image 1- This was the whole subject in the viewfinder, image taken quickly
Image 2- Zoomed in so the subject fits the frame
Image 3- Zoomed in on the part of the pot that’s just a beach hut
Image 4- Pot in its usual surroundings
I experimented in Photoshop and saved the differently cropped images.
For this exercise i decided to go to a local wildlife and wetlands trust site, Martin Mere where there was a wide range of birds to use as subjects. While I usually prefer my images to be very sharp and to freeze the action, I found that the series I preferred were the ones with the slower shutter speeds as they gave me something totally different.
While I think more practice is needed, I liked the blurring of the subject, the water of the mere and the other birds that were in the background.
The two images that stand out are images 19 and 21. Image 19 was taken at a shutter speed of 0.5 and show the gull landing, catching the ‘finger’ effect of the feathers on its wing.
Image 21 captures 3 swans in flight, turning two of them to abstract shapes. This was taken at a shutter speed of 0.5 sec too
The subject that I opted for was a running tap. I chose this as there was a continuous moving flow, a reasonably uncluttered background, and it allowed me to set up the tripod to take the series of images.
I took images from the fastest shutter speed through to the slowest so it ranges from 1/250 to 1/20” second. Again I set the camera to automatically adjust the aperture.
As I took a large range of images, I’ve chosen not to publish them here, i’ve put an image into my paper learning journal for course assessment which is my prefered one of the set.
As per the last exercise, I worked with what I had access to at the time. Wanting to use a different subject from the row of books, I had the idea that I had seen previously- using printed words as a subject. I chose a broadsheet news paper that I had, I set it up with my camera mounted on my tripod and focused on the task.
I set the camera so that the shutter speed altered automatically so I could focus straight on the aperture needed for each image. I’ve marked on each image the limits of the sharpness as I’ve perceived them.
I was undertaking this on a winters evening and as I was keen to progress, I looked into what indoor options I had. I tried a number of different compositions but eventually settled in books and bookends to give the distance needed.
For image one I focused on the bookend, then the second image in the middle of the frame was of the top of the books, and the final image was the last book in the row.
From printing the images, you certainly realise that the focusing really draws the eye into one specific point. After reviewing the images, I prefer the first one, where the focus is directly at the front on the bookend. I prefer it as it just seems to grab the eye and leads it in, then the unfocused line of the books makes the sharp image even stronger.
Exercise 1: Focal Length and Angle of View
As the exercise was to point the camera at any scene, I decided to work with my current surroundings and took an image of a bookcase that we have. As the exercise required you to take an image with both eyes open, I found that quite strange to do, however it was a good exercise in getting an idea of focal length and viewing angle.
Just a test image from one I took a while ago to see how things work!
Wow, my first foray into blogging, I’ll be using this as my learning log for my course with the Open College of the Arts, The Art of Photography. I’ll be posting up information about the exercises and projects and some examples of my photographs as I go along too.